Throw light on the Feminist Movement in the 20th century?

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larrygates eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I assume you mean the Feminist movement of the mid twentieth century and part of the 60's turbulence. The movement got its greatest momentum from the publication of The Feminine Mystiqueby Betty Fredan who said that the 50's image of the stay-at-home housewife was a myth that did not represent reality. She said such women were in a "comfortable concentration camp."  In 1966 Fredan with the help of others organized the National Organization for Women (NOW.) Proponents of the movement called themselves "liberated women."

Among the accomplishments of the Feminist movement: Title IX of the Educational Amendments Act of 1972 was amended to require Colleges to institute affirmative action programs to admit more women; Congress passed the Equal Rights Amendment which had been tied up in Congressional Committees for over 50 years; and many formerly all male institutions such as Harvard, Yale and Princeton began admitting women. NOW was instrumental in bringing Roe vs. Wade to the Supreme Court, which struck down state laws forbidding abortions during the first three months of pregnancy.  There were some failures: The Equal Rights Amendment was not ratified by the requisite number of states, even when the ratification period was extended; and the abortion movement created a backlash among Catholics and fundamentalist Protestants. Still, the role of women in society had changed forever..